Mapping Drones

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Mapping and Surveying Drones

Event 38 builds drones, sensors and post-processing software for creating high resolution, low cost maps on demand. We serve customers in surveying, agriculture, aggregates and research. With our diverse experience and product line, we can recommend the appropriate equipment to meet your requirements and budget. Our support engineers will be able to assist you with every step from setting up and flying a drone to integrating the data into your existing workflow.

Our drones are deployed in dozens of countries around the globe. They are flight tested from humid jungles to freezing tundras and high mountain passes. See why these world class organizations trust us to deliver and support the best mapping drones in the world.

Drone

There are three main factors to consider when picking the drone for your project. It must be able to carry your desired sensor package, it must be able to operate within the restrictions of your environment, and it must be able to cover your entire work area in a reasonable number of flights.

Choosing a Drone

A drone needs to work reliably in your environment in order to provide useful data. The biggest choice to make around a drone is whether to pick a fixed wing or multirotor aircraft. Fixed wing aircraft fly longer and cover more area, up to 1000 acres per flight. As a result they tend to be larger and to require more space for launch and recovery. Some drones, like the E386, are made to perform well around tall obstacles but some open space is still needed. Multirotors can only cover up to about 50 acres per flight for most applications but can be used in virtually any terrain.

Weather conditions can significantly affect the operations of small unmanned aircraft. Strong prevailing wind or wind gusts can reduce performance or the quality of collected imagery. Just as with manned aircraft, high altitude, heat and humidity affect performance and efficiency. Plan for longer ascents and shorter flights when flying in these conditions.

Iris+ Precision Mapping DroneE384 – Best ValueE386 Max Autonomy
Flight Time12 minutes100 minutes85 minutes
Mapping Coverage (5cm/pixel, 60/60 Overlap/Sidelap)50 acres1000 acres850 acres
Infrastructure RequirementTakeoff: 3m Cleared Circle
Landing: 3m Cleared Circle
Takeoff: None
Auto Landing: 150x30m Cleared Space
Operator Landing: 40x15m Cleared Space
Takeoff: None
Landing: 65x25m Cleared Space
Sensor OptionsWX500, NDVIWX500, QX-1, NX500, NDVI, Sequoia, FLIRWX500, QX-1, NX500, NDVI, Sequoia, FLIR
Special FeaturesAccessing Tight WorksitesHigh ProductivityAutonomous Short-Field Landing
Starting At$1799$2790$6890

Sensor

Sensor choice depends on the application. For mapping and surveying, a high resolution optical sensor with low distortion lens is usually desirable.

Choosing a Sensor

The sensor determines the quality and type of data collected by your drone. For creating orthomosaics and digital surface models, picking a high resolution optical sensor like the QX1 or NX500 with a low distortion lens results in the highest quality results for surveying purposes. The QX1 can collect data in the landscape orientation so it is particularly efficient for mapping very large areas while the NX500 is best for collecting the highest resolution imagery.

Other sensors are available for specialty applications. Converted NDVI cameras can collect NDVI imagery for crops at a reasonable cost. Multispectral sensors like the Parrot Sequoia and Micasense RedEdge offer calibrated NDVI imagery at a higher cost. The benefit of adding calibration to NDVI sensors is that it allows absolute NDVI values to be compared day to day and between different fields and seasons while an uncalibrated sensor can only make comparisons within a single flight. (*Note the Drone Data Management System™ does not support Sequoia or RedEdge imagery)

Thermal sensors from FLIR are also available. Thermal imagery is typically very low resolution but can be useful for a variety of applications in agriculture, construction and inspection.

Processing

The Drone Data Management System™ takes data from any drone, automatically geotags the images and produces a high resolution orthomosaic, DEM, 3d model and more. Sharing results privately with clients is as easy as sending a link.

Data Processing

In flight, your drone will collect dozens to hundreds of individual images. It’s then up to you to process that data by first correlating the images with the data from your GPS receiver and then by reconstructing the scene and producing an orthomosaic and digital elevation model. Depending on your application, you may also need to deliver additional analyses or formats like NDVI, KMZ files, 3d models, point clouds and more.

We’ve built the Drone Data Management System™ to automate these steps for convenience and speed. We automatically tag your photos based on a provided telemetry log and export a number of analyses and file formats without any operator intervention required. Once the results are finished, you can view them online in our Map Viewer software and share the viewer and high resolution originals with clients instantly over the web.